Buenas Tardes, Friends and Family of Akumal!
Wanted to share some of the fabulous news on the upcoming Akumal Arts Festival!
The Akumal Arts Festival (November 08, 09, 10) is a community based, global initiative. The vision is to bring a fiesta of art and activism to Akumal Pueblo through an international consortium of artists who are creating and engaging the community as well as enhancing and beautifying the town for locals and our many worldwide visitors. Currently in its second year, the festival is a volunteer-run, donation based endeavor. With over 10 (visiting and local) artists, it’s a special and transformative event. Check out our 2019 artist line up on instagram @akumalartsfestival (List of artists and their origins are included in a separate post of this issue). Also attached in another post is more info on the festival, artist line up and how you can help participate. We currently are looking for a few more funds and places for the artists to stay. They pay their way to get here and in exchange we house them from Nov. 5-11 th, give them a couple meals a day and provide supplies to paint or teach their classes. This Festival is completely a Volunteer based project created out of love for our little community of Akumal.
Who would have thought our idea to bring a few artists into our little community would explode into such a massively successive festival with the inaugural first annual Akumal Artists Festival. The artists and the community enjoyed it so much that the artists actually renamed the festival among themselves as the Festival of Love. Many are returning this November to continue to paint and teach. We had over 350 applications and requests to participate this year! Unfortunately we are unable to host them all, but we have accepted the number of National y International artists to 100. Last year we had 100 artists, painted 100 murals and offered 60 art classes for kids and adults throughout the schools, library and community center. There were countless musical acts, dances performed by the children of the pueblo and a variety of spectacular acts including a human circus! Check out the clips below that were created by Brad Owly, who is returning this year with a 5 person production team to record so much more with the objective of creating a documentary.
We are also kicking off a Casa Bonita Program where we are pairing artists with different families to turn their homes into artful masterpieces! There are so many positive things happening in our community of Akumal from the Festival it’s hard to list them all!
Business sponsors to date include Turtle Bay Café & Bakery, Akumal Pueblo, Tortuga Escondida Residency Center, Akumal Direct & Loco Gringo, Third Rail, Education Partners, Hekab Be Biblioteca, Transformar Educando Akumal. Community Sponsors include Safari Family foundation, Community Engagement, Ben Josh Foundation .
On Sept 22nd in New York city a gallery- 128 Allen Street, is hosting a fundraiser for the Akumal Arts Festival with special guest Dr. Cliff Cockerham. He will talk about the connection between art, Akumal, activism, and give an overview of what the acceleration of global climate change means for NYC, Akumal & the world. Everyone attending this event is not only supporting the artists and the festival, but supporting an indigenous community that is in the cross-hairs of global climate change. All funds raised will go to the production of the Akumal Arts Festival
Dr. Cliff Cockerham , a specialist on the health impacts of climate change, has a long history of activism going back to the 1970s. Much of his current work nationally and internationally involves speaking and teaching about climate justice (CJ) and intersectionality. www.cecoalition.org/about
198 Allen Street is a pop-up gallery space located in a now super-fashionable area of LES, downtown Manhattan. Providing the scarce, invaluable resource of a venue to the local art community, 198 Allen has been a cornerstone of support for street art in the Lower East Side. https://198allenstreet.com/
Everyday more fabulous things are happening and the incredible news is available on on instagram @akumalartsfestival. Even more exciting, Jennifer and Bartley Smith, Turtle Bay Cafe & Bakery, personally attended this successful gallery fundraiser in NYC. Publicity for this event was termed Pueblo Magica.
For more information about confirmed artists and sponsors, please contact Marti Johnston at [email protected] or visit our website www.akumalartsfest.com.
Jen and Bart are also pleased to answer any questions about the festival, and looking forward to having you participate. Contact them at: Turtle Bay Café & Bakery, turtlebaycafe.com